Executive Committee

Immediate Past President

MATTHEW JOHNSTON, PLA, ASLA
Associate, MVLA

Matthew Johnston is a registered landscape architect with MVLA, an award-winning design firm in Alexandria, VA.  He received a Master’s degree in Landscape Architecture and Urban Planning from Virginia Tech and is an enthusiastic member of the professional design community represented by the Potomac Chapter of ASLA.

Matt’s background in international relations, urban planning, and landscape architecture informs his commitment to bring the benefits of design to more people.  He previously served as Chapter Coordinator for the DC chapter of Architecture for Humanity and as a member of the Potomac Yard Design Advisory Committee for the City of Alexandria, helping to shape development in a growing urban corridor.

President

ANNIE VARMA, RLA, ASLA
Licensed Landscape Architect

Annie has previously worked as Senior Associate with Lee and Associates, a landscape architecture firm in Washington, D.C. and practiced as an Architect in India prior to transitioning to Landscape Architecture.

She holds a Master’s degree in Landscape Architecture with a minor in Cultural Heritage and Museum Practices from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and a Bachelor’s degree in Architecture from India. Over the past 10 years as a professional, she has worked in diversified Landscape Architecture, Historic Preservation, and Architecture & Planning firms and brings the knowledge of Heritage Conservation and waterfront design based on her graduate study. She has published her work twice and actively pursues and researches green and sustainable initiatives, in both her urban design projects and professional development pursuits. Her most recent work includes a broad spectrum of projects ranging from mixed-use residential, playgrounds and parks, streetscape and public realm design, and master planning projects. She also loves to volunteer for community causes and providing pro-bono graphic design assistance to emerging entrepreneurs.

President-Elect

CARLA ELLERN, RLA, ASLA, LEED® AP BD+C
Landscape Architect, Lila Fendrick Landscape Architects

Carla Ellern, ASLA, LEED® AP BD+C is a registered landscape architect with Lila Fendrick Landscape Architects in Chevy Chase, MD. She received her Master’s in Landscape Architecture from the Graduate School of Design at Harvard and would like to spread the word about what landscape architects do through her involvement with Potomac ASLA. In the public sector, she worked for the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), Montgomery County, Maryland in the RainScapes program where she worked with homeowners and communities to reduce stormwater runoff. She’s interested in improving the environment and people’s lives by expanding green infrastructure and sustainability in our landscapes.

Trustee

ROBERT B. TILSON, FASLA, PLA
Landscape Architect/PB

Rob Tilson, FASLA, PLA has held many positions for the Potomac Chapter. Most notably, he has served as a two-time President from 1993-1994, two-term Trustee from 1998-2003. While serving in these capacities, Rob represented the chapter on the Virginia Licensure Committee (1998-2001), 100 Parks/100 Years Program Committee (1998), and the Centennial Medallion Program Committee (1998). Rob also instituted and re-organized the Nominating Committee for the Chapter and served as Chairman from 2002 to 2003. He co-chaired the Host Committee for the 2010 ASLA National Meeting in Washington, DC.

Nationally, Rob has served in several capacities including ASLA Vice-President of Professional Practice from 2004-2005. During his tenure as Vice President, Rob helped launch the SITES initiative and revamped the Professional Practice Network program and led the Archive Committee to help establish the Fellows database. Rob also served as the Board of Trustees Representative on the Landscape Architecture Foundation Board (2003). In 2005, Rob was recognized as a Fellow for his service to the profession.

As Chapter Trustee, Rob will concentrate on increasing Chapter visibility with other allied professions and work to promote Landscape Architecture and continue to serve as a leader within the ASLA Board of Trustees.

Rob received his Landscape Architecture degree from Purdue University and has been practicing landscape architecture in the Washington, DC metro area for over 30 years. Rob is licensed in Virginia and Maryland.

Secretary

JULES KRINSKY, PLA, ASLA
Landscape Architect, Rhodeside & Harwell

Jules Krinsky is a creative problem solver, landscape architect and urban designer who has worked in the Washington Metropolitan area since 2012.  Currently, Jules works as a Landscape Architect with the multi-disciplinary firm Rhodeside & Harwell in Alexandria, VA.  At Rhodeside & Harwell, Jules works on projects ranging from small local parks to US Embassy projects around the world and everything in between.

Jules received a bachelor’s degree in Landscape Architecture at the University of Georgia and a Master’s of Science in urban design at Georgia Tech.  He is a licensed Landscape Architect in the State of Maryland.

Treasurer

MATTHEW SELLERS, PLA, ASLA, LEED GA
Landscape Architect, Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute

Matthew Sellers is a 21-year resident of the DC area, moving here from Ohio for graduate school at Virginia Tech in Alexandria, VA. His education is in urban planning and landscape architecture. He is a landscape architect licensed in the state of Maryland, and member of ASLA. His professional history includes work with the landscape architecture firms Stephenson + Good (9 years) and Clinton & Associates (5 years). He also taught courses in the Landscape Design and Sustainable Landscapes program at George Washington University (12 years). Matthew’s experience includes the design and construction administration of residential gardens, public plazas, playgrounds, perimeter security master plans, multi-acre mixed-use neighborhood developments, and animal habitats. Currently he is the Landscape Architect at Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute providing thoughtful and creative planning and design solutions for the Zoo’s visitors and inhabitants.

Members-At-Large

BRAD BARTELL, ASLA
President, Landscape Architect
Bartell Design, LLC

Brad Bartell has 30 years of international and domestic and private and public-sector experience.  A registered landscape architect, land planner, and golf course designer, Bartell has been involved in the entitlements process and in planning and landscape design of single-family and large-scale residential communities, parks, commercial developments, roadway projects, urban and green street streetscapes, sports complexes, large warehouse projects, office parks, church campuses, and 35 new and 50 renovated golf courses.

With a comprehensive background in construction management, Bartell creates notable, revenue-generating, environmentally sensitive, visually pleasing, efficient projects by shaping design concepts with his extensive on-site work, with each phase of development or redevelopment in the hands of a proven industry expert.

Bartell approaches landscape and hardscape design with the demands of the site, the project vision, and the customer’s wishes, in mind. Materials are selected based largely on their indigenous nature and their adaptability to the site. Harmonizing all the elements of the landscape results in an environmentally sensitive, visually pleasing, efficient system of outdoor space, adding character and value to the development.

CONNIE FAN, ASLA
Landscape Architect

Connie is president of LSG Landscape Architecture, based in Tysons, Virginia, and leads sustainable design efforts for the company. Connie’s work ranges from commercial, institutional, and planning projects to public streetscape revitalization, and her most recent work has concentrated on sustainable site initiatives and smart growth. Connie was recently involved with a ULI Advisory Services Panel for intensive community outreach supporting reclamation of public spaces in the context of an urban highway repositioning project. This collaboration has led to Connie’s increasing work with the social impact of Landscape Architecture. She holds a certification in Healthcare Garden Design. She also actively pursues and researches green and sustainable initiatives.

Connie graduated from the College of Environmental Science and Forestry in Syracuse, NY with a Master’s in Landscape Architecture. Connie’s involvement with organizations in the region includes service on the Planning, Zoning, and related committees in Fairfax County. She has served the Tysons area with contributions to the Park System Master Plan Advisory Group and participation in the Tysons Partnership Urban Design Council and the Sustainability Council. Connie regularly participates in ULI’s Placemaking Council, as well as serving on ULI TAP (Technical Assistance Panel) programs. Among her regional affiliations, Ms. Fan has been influential in the growth of the Greater Washington Asian American Architects and Engineers Professionals organization.

JENNIFER HORN, ASLA

Jennifer Horn has a BS in Horticulture from Virginia Tech as well as a Masters in Landscape Architecture from University of Georgia. From 1999 until 2009 Jennifer practiced landscape architecture in New York City. Her professional experience included designing zoo exhibits for the Bronx Zoo; developing the ecological program for Fresh Kills Park on behalf of New York’s Department of City Planning; and designing gardens, estates and parks for Edmund Hollander Landscape Architect and Deborah Nevins Associates.

Jennifer is a regionally licensed landscape architect. Since founding JHLA in 2009, Jennifer has continued to design luxury landscapes for residences, communities and resorts. Active projects involve collaboration with local architects and contractors for projects in DC and the surrounding municipalities. In 2017, Washingtonian Magazine named Jennifer a “woman to watch”. In June 2020, Jennifer instituted a new, annual scholarship with Virginia Tech’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. A $2,000 gift will go to students who are majoring in Landscape and Turfgrass Science and are members of student organizations such as Minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources and Related Sciences or the Society for the Advancement of Hispanics/Chicanos. Jennifer has received recognition from Home & Design Magazine, Luxe, Real Simple, Traditional Home and her renderings have been published in Vogue Magazine. She has received various awards including a Gold Award from the Association of Professional Landscape Designers in 2020.

Tony Kostreski, PLA, ASLA, PROF MEMBER APLD
Product Marketing Specialist – Landscape | Vectorworks, Inc.

Tony Kostreski, PLA, ASLA, brings municipal, institutional, mixed-use, and high-end residential site design proficiency to his role as product marketing specialist for the landscape industries at Vectorworks, Inc. Tony has also helped design and design-build firms become more efficient by implementing best practice workflows in design, modeling, documentation, and estimation. He holds a Bachelor of Landscape Architecture from the University of Maryland, College Park and continues to serve the ASLA Maryland Chapter on its executive committee as Member-At-Large.

CONNOR PRICE, ASLA, PLA

Connor is a Senior Designer at Oehme, van Sweden. He received his bachelor’s degree in landscape architecture from West Virginia University. His background consists of collaborating on projects that range from large-scale campus masterplans, complex urban sites, and intimate gardens. With an interest in landscape since childhood, and an early exposure to the design/build world, Connor’s work examines the technical aspects of designed elements and how they contribute to a successful project.

MICHAEL STELFOX, Associate ASLA
Landscape Designer, Oehme, van Sweden
 

Michael Stelfox is a designer at Oehme, van Sweden. Previously he led community engagement in Virginia Beach as a Sea Grant Fellow with Clark Nexsen, assisted with a trail study for the National Park Service, and designed for single-family residential, multifamily residential, and commercial landscapes.

Michael earned his Bachelor’s of Landscape Architecture from Virginia Tech in 2018.

DANIEL STRAUB, ASLA, PLA, LEED

Dan is an accomplished Urban Planner, licensed Landscape Architect, and accredited LEED professional with over thirty-five years of project experience in both public and private sectors. Dan concentrates on bridging the gap between large scale planning/visioning efforts, or concept design, and the more detail-scale design solutions that can be implemented, are cost effective, and that meet sustainability criteria. Committed to collaboration, he works to seemlessly integrate the various professional interests that overlap in complex planning and design projects.

His broad professional experience has ranged from master planning, transportation and land use planning, environmental planning, zoning review and evaluation, municipal planning and town planning, urban design, and Federal/Military planning to feasibility studies and reserve studies, entitlement drawings, urban streetscape design, green infrastructure projects, park and play-ground design, residential garden design, construction documents for all kinds and scales of projects. Dan has a very special interest in urban waterfronts, urban streetscape design, and green infrastructure.

Dan graduated with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering and has two separate master’s degrees in city planning and landscape architecture. He has served as the professional representative to the Urban Design Advisory Committee in Alexandria (2006-2016), the Executive Committee of MDASLA (Secretary: 2003-04), and as a member of AIA/Cleveland-Regional Urban Design Assistance Team. He has also served as a volunteer at the Alexandria Seaport Foundation, the American Horticulture Society, Design DC, and currently is a member of the committee to Save River Farm. He recently completed a part-time teaching assignment (landscape materials, sustainability and construction documents) at the University of Maryland (2018-2020).

ABIGAIL THOMAS, PLA, ASLA, CBLP
Landscape Architect, Associate | Ayers Saint Gross

The foundations of Abby’s career lie in her interests of sustainable design and the impacts of environmental and social geographies in the landscape. She is an alumna of Penn State University, where she obtained a BA in Landscape Architecture and minor in Geography. Her education fed her curiosities of how people relate to the landscape and use outdoor spaces, as well as the social and cultural aspects that societies have on the land at all scales. She has found the DMV area to be rich in opportunities to exploit her interests and use her design skills and education to create spaces for everyone.

Both her degree and minor were complimented by studying abroad and exploring places in North America, Europe, and Africa. Abby has experience in community design, commercial-residential design, campus design/planning, and high-end residential design in the Chesapeake Bay region. She is currently an Associate and Landscape Architect at Ayers Saint Gross, where she works primarily on college, university, and hospital campuses. Additionally, she is a member of the Public Relations Committee at Ayers Saint Gross and enjoys participating in the many volunteer and community opportunities there. Abby is currently our Chapter’s Membership Chair.  She likes to volunteer her time to the community when she can, and also takes interest in personal creative endeavors involving graphic design and photography.

DAVIS WALKER
Project Manager, Landscape Architect, and Arborist | Kimley-Horn
Davis Walker serves as a Project Manager, Landscape Architect, and Arborist at Kimley-Horn, focused on landscape architecture/ land development projects. His work predominantly consists of commercial retail, multifamily residential, Parks and Recreation and Public Streetscapes. Davis has a passion for the built environment and all that it impacts. Davis graduated with a Bachelors of Landscape Architecture from the University of Georgia. Outside of work, he enjoys fly fishing, boating & golden retrievers. 

Executive Director

Susan Newman

Prior to being named Executive Director of the Potomac Chapter of ASLA, Newman served as Executive Director of Corporate Facility Advisors (CORFAC International), an alliance of entrepreneurial commercial real estate firms. For more than 20 years, she was Secretary General (CEO) of the U.S. Chapter of the International Real Estate Federation (FIABCI), also serving as interim Secretary General for the international body during part of that time.

With more than 30 years in association management, Newman works with boards and volunteers and is responsible for the administration of the association, as well as membership retention and services.